Where to store archived emails?

Following a recent thread on this forum I decided to download my Google emails (I’ll also download my iCloud email) so I can archive them for future reference.

Where do you recommend I store the archive, an iCloud folder, DEVONthink, external drive, other?

IMO, any location that gets backed up automatically.

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Kinda depends on what you think you might want to do with these emails in the near and far future.

If you have DEVONthink, why not make a database “Emails” and import them there. That database can be on your working computer or stored on an external USB Drive. Don’t recomment on NAS unless you have a very fast network. I have had more then one failed USB drive in the past so i do not trust them for archive. But do back them up routinely.

I don’t see the point of putting them in an iCloud Sync folder, frankly. iCloud Sync fo lder is not a backup. But if you need/want sync on multiple devices, then why not?

You could put them on an external drive (USB, NAS, or whatever) to keep from cluttering up your working machine, but that a detail. See above about reliability of USB.

I’d put them in DEVONthink and keep the file on the working computer until such time the size gets too big for my computer. Probably unlikely. I would not routinely open that database in DEVONthink and only open when wanting to look or search old emails. What I do now but the source is Apple mail and I import old stuff using DEVONthink’s built-in capabilities.

DEVONthink and EagleFiler have built-in support for archiving email. If you feel like getting extremely nerdy, I’ve read about people using offlineimap to create an automatic, open-format local archive of their emails.

Personally, I just keep an “Archive” folder in each email account and use ⌘⌃A in Mail.app to move messages I’d like to keep.

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I imported my old Gmail and Hey email archives into Mail.app “On My Mac” so that when I search, I get results from old emails, too.

IIRC, Mail threads emails across accounts, which was helpful when I transitioned from Google Apps to iCloud with a custom domain.

I use BackBlaze, so those emails are backed up constantly, and I put the .mbox files on an external HD as well.


That wouldn’t work for me. I deal with email almost exclusively on mobile.

I also have old emails archived in separate DEVONthink databases per account and find that it works well. I have been able to search and easily find old emails as needed.